Alumni Spotlight: Mozambique

In this month’s alumni spotlight, World Learning is thrilled to highlight the remarkable efforts of three Global UGRAD alumni from Mozambique who are joining forces to establish an organization dedicated to promoting climate literacy within their homeland.

Xana smiling in front of a field of grass and flowers
Xana Maunze, Global UGRAD participant in Spring 2018

Xana Maunze, a Global UGRAD participant from the 2017-2018 cohort who studied at Fairleigh Dickinson University, embarked on her journey toward sustainability during her exchange program in the United States. Inspired by her experiences with food waste in the United States and driven by concerns about extreme weather in Mozambique caused by climate change, she pursued a Master’s degree in Sustainability and Green Business. Now, as a recent graduate, Xana is championing climate literacy in her country by co-founding an organization called Luvago Academy. The Academy aims to achieve a greener future by empowering youth and integrating climate literacy into education curricula in Mozambique. Collaborating with fellow UGRAD alumni, she emphasizes a “just transition” towards sustainability, exemplifying the transformative influence of international education. In communicating with World Learning, she noted her “excitement about leading the projects we have lined up for the year ahead!”

Alexandre Daudo Saibo posing for selfie with a backwards white baseball hat and over the hear headphones
Alexandre Daudo Saibo, Global UGRAD participant in fall 2023

Alexandre Daudo Saibo, a Global UGRAD alumnus from fall 2023 who attended Southern Oregon University, immersed himself in impactful courses, such as sustainability leadership and curriculum instruction, during his exchange program. With a passion for making a difference, he partnered with his fellow alums to establish Luvago Academy. His journey reflects the profound impact of international exchange programs in nurturing global leaders committed to positive change. In his own words, “The Global UGRAD Program had a huge impact on our personal development. The Luvago Academy project’s roots stem from our participation in the Global UGRAD Program.”

Jose Bernardo posing for selfie in a white collared shirt and blue tie
Jose Bernardo, Global UGRAD participant in spring 2023

Jose Bernardo, a Global UGRAD alumnus from spring 2023 who studied at Utah Tech University, is deeply passionate about environmental sustainability and aims to combat the impact of climate change in Mozambique. While in the United States, he attended conferences and joined activities through the Department of Environmental Studies at Utah Tech University, and commented that “Global UGRAD impacted my involvement in the Luvago Academy project through opportunities at my host university and the lessons learned during the End of Program Workshop in Washington, DC.” Inspired by his community’s environmental challenges, he joined Luvago Academy to envision a greener future. Through collaboration and collective effort, Jose strives for a healthier, more sustainable Mozambique, echoing the importance of climate education in shaping a brighter tomorrow.

Together, Xana, Alexandre, Jose, and their team are working tirelessly to establish Luvago Academy. Though still in the process of formal registration and securing funding, Luvago Academy’s vision spans across Mozambique and aims to provide broad access to its initiatives. Through their dedication and collaborative spirit, these young leaders aspire to combat climate change and foster a greener, more resilient Mozambique.